Don’t bet your job that someone read your email.

Can you count on your email getting delivered or read? Don’t bet your job on it.

What should you do if you send an important email, and you have not received a reply within a reasonable amount of time? First, check your “Sent” or “Out Box” folder to make sure your email actually got sent. If it did, send a follow up. If you still get no reply, pick up the phone and call your intended recipient. Don’t apply pressure, just ask if they received your email. If they answer affirmatively, just say, thanks and that you wanted to be sure they received it.

There are many reasons an email may not get delivered or opened. Did you send to the correct email address? (You would be surprised at the number of emails sent to the wrong person.) Previously, we talked about spam filters and anti-spam programs. Another reason could also be the size of the attachment you sent. Many users have mail boxes that are relatively small. Five and ten MB mailboxes are not uncommon, so very large attachments (or multiple attachments) can render your email undeliverable. Even larger mailboxes fill up quickly, especially for someone who doesn’t check mail frequently (or leaves their mail on the server for a long time). Think before you hit the send button.

Emails do get lost in the etherland. In general, there is no guaranteed delivery. For those of you who really need a guarantee, there are some paid services that guarantee delivery.

In short:

  • Don’t assume someone read your email.
  • Check your out box to see if your email was sent.
  • Check your recipient address for accuracy.
  • Check the file size of your attachment if you have one.
  • Think before you hit the send button.
  • Follow up with another email or call.

As I said, don’t bet your job that someone read your email.